New laws coming to California in 2022
Speaker 1: (00:00)
As the year comes to a close, we wanna look ahead at the new laws going into effect that could impact your day to day life laws around housing, climate change, and police reform. Top the list. Scott rod state government reporter for cap radio joins us to talk about changes to the laws in 2022. Scott. Welcome. Thanks Jade. So California has been dealing with a climate crisis, wildfires being one of the main issues. Tell us about Senate bill 3 32, a new prescribed burning law. That'll go into effect in the new year.
Speaker 2: (00:32)
So the law aims to increase prescribed burning in the purpose of prescribed burning or controlled burning is to reintroduce fire to the landscape, whether that's to forest or other wild lands in a controlled way to mimic fire's natural, low intensity role. Uh, and that helps eliminate dangerous fire fuels like brush and grass, and the law reduces the liability for people doing these prescribed burns. Someone has to be grossly negligent in order for them to be found liable for damages if the burn gets out of control, but they have further protections. Say if there was an honest mistake, if they were acting responsibly or if there was an act of God that just caused the fire to get out of control and it's worth noting that there are still restrictions and requirements in place, not just anyone can go out and set these burns, but lawmakers are hoping that it will increase these prescribed
Speaker 1: (01:22)
And housing has also been a big issue in California. Lately. Rent is high. Home prices are high and low inventory seems to be driving it all. Tell us about Senate bill nine, the California housing opportunity and more efficiency act.
Speaker 2: (01:36)
So Senate bill nine has gained a little bit of controversy, certainly what was being discussed and pay past. And so it essentially allows multifamily homes like duplexes and fourplexes to be built in neighborhoods that have been traditionally zoned as single family neighborhoods. Uh, and the pushback came from some homeowners in local governments. Their argument was that, you know, this could end traditional home ownership. Folks who supported the law said, you know, it won't do you, anything of the sort, it will help add desperately needed housing. It'll help ease the home crunch in California, open up building in these neighborhoods. And they also say, look, this is not gonna create high rises in typical neighborhoods. It'll just add some of these multifamily houses.
Speaker 1: (02:18)
And could you tell us about Senate bill to on police reform laws, which goes into effect at the beginning of the new year?
Speaker 2: (02:25)
Yeah. Senate bill two is one, you know, of a number of recent police reform laws that have gone into effect in, in recent years. This one essentially creates a system, uh, in a process for de-certify police officers. If they've acted badly, essentially it essentially tries to end the practice of police officers hopping from one department to another. If they've violated the law, or if they've done something to, you know, essentially breach that trust with the public. This creates that process where if an officer commits a certain offense, uh, they won't be able to hop from department to department.
Speaker 1: (02:59)
And then they're sent bill 7 87 animal welfare and food supply law. Tell us about that.
Speaker 2: (03:05)
This one has stirred up a little bit of controversy. Voters may have remembered back in 2018 voting on proposition 12. It was overwhelmingly supported by California voters. It goes into effect on the first of the year, and it requires that pigs calves and hens that are raised for food to have adequate room to move around and also lay down on these farms where they're raised the law bans, the sale of products from facilities nationwide that don't meet these guidelines. And the big concern here is pork products, you know, especially bacon, California gets a lot of its pork from out state and farmers and producers around the country are pushing back on this new law. You know, they're saying that they just can't comply with these new restrictions. They haven't had enough time and we've been seeing some lawsuits filed over this, um, coming from both farmers, but also industry groups, representing restaurants. They're concerned that this could increase prices and reduce, apply of pork products. You know, at a time when supply chain issues are already kind of creating issues at the grocery store and for restaurants
Speaker 1: (04:08)
Bacon and pork aside, do you have any sense of how this might impact the cost
Speaker 2: (04:12)
Of food? There are concerns that it could increase costs for food and, and, you know, again, we're already seeing food increases from inflation at grocery store. So folks who are opposed to this have expressed concern that it could exacerbate those price increases,
Speaker 1: (04:26)
You know, so much has changed during the pandemic. And one thing that was very different for California was getting to order your favorite cocktail to go Senate bill 3 89 cocktails to go, went into effect during the pandemic. And it looks like this law is here to stay a, can you tell us more about this law and its impact?
Speaker 2: (04:43)
That's right. So there was an emergency COVID rule that allowed restaurants itself to go cocktails with meals. This law extends that for the next five years. Um, and you know, this rule helped businesses stay open and it turned out to just be very popular, both among business owners and the public who was going in ordering a lot more food to go. And so the law requires that drinks must be ordered with a food purchase. There's a two drink maximum per meal, and the Togo cocktails must be served in containers and clearly labeled. So, you know, this doesn't mean that consumption out in public. Once you walk outside on the sidewalk, you know, that's not gonna become legal. You need to, you know, take it with you, get home and then you can enjoy your whatever ation you have ordered. But again, it turned out to be very popular in five years, the, the lost sunset. So lawmakers can revisit it and see if it continues to be popular.
Speaker 1: (05:33)
Are there any other laws that sit at top of mind for you? That'll be changing in 2022, there
Speaker 2: (05:39)
Are a couple related to waste in recycling. The state wants to avoid sending food waste to landfills. So it it's turning it into composting or biofuel. Uh, and you know, the goal is to not only use this food waste, but also to avoid having it go to landfills, which then creates methane. Uh, and so local governments, uh, will be deciding how residents should dispose of food. Scraps. Many are telling residents to use the existing green waste bins, which are often used for yard waste. Uh, but I would encourage residents to look at their local waste management protocols from city or county governments and figure out what the best way to discard their food waste is. And, uh, there's also another one on recycling and it won't go into effect right away, but consumers will start to notice some of these changes in the coming years, the law that's going into effect limits when food packages can use the iconic chasing arrow symbol, uh, in a lot of packaging, especially single use plastic, it can't actually be recycled, even though it has this triangular chasing Aero symbol and the state is developing guidelines on when these materials can actually have that symbol based on whether or not it's realistically recyclable manufacturers are, are gonna have to comply with this by at the latest 2025.
Speaker 2: (06:52)
But consumers can expect to see some of these changes probably sooner than that in the coming years. I I've been
Speaker 1: (06:57)
Speaking to Scott, rod, state, government reporter for cap radio, Scott, thank you so much for
Speaker 2: (07:02)
Joining us. Thank you for having me on.
New laws that could impact your day-to-day life will be going into effect the first of the new year. There are new laws around housing, climate change, police reform and many more. Scott Rodd, state government reporter for CapRadio joined KPBS Midday Edition on Friday to talk about some of the new laws.
Senate Bill No. 332: Prescribed Burns
Rodd said this new law aims to increase prescribed burning and reduce wildfires. It reduces the liability for people carrying out prescribed burns.
"The purpose of prescribed burning or controlled burning is to reintroduce fire to the landscape, whether that's a forest or other wildlands in a controlled way, to mimic fire's natural, low-intensity role. That helps eliminate dangerous fire fuels," Rodd said. "The law reduces the liability for people doing these prescribed burns. Someone has to be grossly negligent in order for them to be found liable for damages if the burn gets out of control."
Senate Bill No. 9: Housing
Rodd said SB-9 allows multi-family homes, such as duplexes and fourplexes, to be built in neighborhoods zoned as single-family neighborhoods.
Senate Bill No. 2: Police Reform
"Senate Bill No. 2 is one of a number of recent police reform laws that have gone into effect in recent years," Rodd said. "This one essentially creates a system and a process for decertifying police officers if they've acted badly. It essentially tries to end the practice of police officers hopping from one department to another if they've violated the law or if they've done something to essentially breach that trust with the public. This creates that process where if an officer commits a certain offense, they won't be able to hop from department to department."
RELATED: Bringing home the bacon tops new California laws in 2022
Senate Bill No. 787: Animal Welfare
Rodd said this new law going into effect on Jan. 1 requires pigs, calves and hens raised for food to have room to move and lay down at farms. The law bans the sale of products from facilities nationwide that don’t meet the guidelines.
"The big concern here is pork products, especially bacon. California gets a lot of its pork from out of state, and farmers and producers around the country are pushing back on this new law, saying they can't comply with these new restrictions and they haven't had enough time," Rodd said. "We've been seeing some lawsuits filed over this, coming from both farmers and industry groups representing restaurants. They're concerned that this could increase prices, and reduce supply of pork products at a time when supply chain issues are already kind of creating issues at the grocery store and for restaurants."
Senate Bill No. 1383: Composting and Organics Recycling
"The state wants to avoid sending food waste to landfills, so it's turning it into composting or biofuel," Rodd said. "The goal is to not only use this food waste, but also to avoid having it go to landfills which then creates methane."
He said local governments will be deciding how residents should dispose of food scraps.
Senate Bill No. 389: Cocktails To-go
"There was an emergency COVID rule that allowed restaurants to sell to-go cocktails with meals, and this law extends that for the next five years," Rodd said.
Rodd said this rule helped businesses stay open and it turned out to be very popular among both business owners and customers who were ordering more food to go. He said there's a two-drink maximum per meal, and the to-go cocktails must be served in containers and clearly labeled. Public consumption is not allowed.
Lawmakers can revisit this law in five years to make a renewal decision.
The Office of Governor Gavin Newsom published a list of more laws going into effect on Jan. 1, 2022.